NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Anthony Davis had 33 points, 18 rebounds and four steals, and the New Orleans Pelicans defeated Golden State 119-100 on Friday night to trim the Warriors’ series lead to 2-1.
Davis was particularly dominant around the basket, scoring numerous times on dunks of the driving, put-back or alley-oop variety, and the Pelicans outscored the Warriors 54-36 in the paint.
Jrue Holiday scored 21 for New Orleans, Ian Clark added 18 points against his former club. As in Game 2, Rajon Rondo once again had a heated exchange with Warriors forward Draymond Green. This time, however, Rondo backed it up with 21 assists.
Klay Thompson scored 26 for Golden State, but missed 13 of 22 shots. Stephen Curry, in his second game back after a sprained knee sidelined him more than a month, missed 13 of 19 shots and finished with 19 points. Kevin Durant scored 22 points for the Warriors, who never led by more than a single point.
Golden State shot uncharacteristically poorly from outside, missing 22 of 31 3-point attempts and finishing at 38 percent shooting (35 of 92) overall.
The Pelicans, meanwhile, made 14 of 31 3s, with Holiday, Clark, Nikola Mirotic and Solomon Hill each hitting three.
They seemed to benefit from being back at home and looked to be the more comfortable team shooting from the outset.
Hill, who missed all four 3s he took in the first two games, made his first three from deep. At one point late in the second quarter, New Orleans was 10-of-15 from 3, while Golden State was just 5-of-15.
Mirotic’s third 3 of the first half put the Pelicans up 60-48 late in the second quarter, but the Warriors’ ability to score in bursts help them slash their deficit in half before the period ended.
Thompson, who’d shot poorly in Game 2 and at the beginning of Game 3, scored eight quick points on a driving layup and a pair of 3s, trimming New Orleans’ lead to 62-56 at halftime.
But the Pelicans opened the third quarter with a 10-2 run and led by double digits the rest of the way, responding each time the Warriors tried to make a run.
New Orleans lost a 20-point, fourth-quarter lead in Game 3 the last time these teams met in the playoffs in the first round in 2015.
In this Game 3, New Orleans led by 25 in the third quarter after Davis’ free throws made it 90-65.
Golden State closed the quarter on a 10-2 run capped by Durant’s 3, but New Orleans build the lead back to 26 in the fourth quarter and the Warriors starters were out of the game with five minutes to go.
Warriors: Green, who was soundly booed by Pelicans fans, had 11 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists. … Coach Steve Kerr juggled the starting lineup with two new insertions, elevating Curry back to starter and also starting center JaVale McGee. Andre Iguodala and Nick Young, who started games 1 and 2, opened as reserves. … Kerr was assessed a technical foul in the first half.
Pelicans: Mirotic finished with 16 points and E’Twaun Moore scored 13. … New Orleans outrebounded the Warriors 54 to 44 and finished with a 19-12 advantage in second-chance points. … Got 32 points from reserves, led by Clark.
Game 4 is Sunday afternoon, when New Orleans can even the series or the Warriors can take a 3-1 lead back home for Game 5.
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